As a Janeite purist, I confess I didn’t like when in the first chapter Mr. Darcy says he doesn’t care about propriety. However, I continued reading the book because the premise was interesting and I enjoyed some of the initial scenes. Unfortunately, after reading the book, I cannot say I enjoyed much of it. I will try to explain why, but to do that, I will have to do some spoilers.
I wish I didn’t have to give too much of the story away, but only by doing so I will be able to explain why I didn’t enjoy it. It may also allow my readers to form their own opinion, as some of the reasons why I did not like the book may not be an issue to other people. We all like different types of books, and I’m sure some readers may like The Storm, it just wasn’t my cup of tea.
In this book, Mr. Darcy faces a head injury during a storm after the Hunsford proposal. As a consequence, Elizabeth is told he doesn’t remember her refusal, and is led to believe she has to pretend to be fiancée so that the shock doesn’t make him get worse.
I liked this premise, but I did not like the way the story continued. One of the reasons I didn’t enjoy this book was the liberties Elizabeth allowed Mr. Darcy. On the first 3 days that Elizabeth is still pretending to be Mr. Darcy’s fiancée, she allows him to kiss her, masturbate in front of her and sleep holding her tight. After that, the engagement is made public and she is forced to really become his fiancée.
I also did not like that the Jane/Bingley situation is almost forgotten during the book, and that it was only briefly mentioned that Mr. Darcy had told Bingley the truth. It felt as if the author suddenly remembered this was one of the reasons for Elizabeth’s refusal, and decided to close that chapter.
As for the characters, Elizabeth did not seem Elizabeth to me, and Mr. Darcy is self-centred, bossy, with bad moods all the time, and capable of anything just to get what he wants.
Despite everything I’ve mentioned, in my opinion, the ending was the worst part of the book. In the end we discover that Mr. Darcy has lied about not remembering the refusal the entire time just to get Elizabeth to marry him. He continued lying while they were married, and only admits the mischief when their child is about to be born.
I could not imagine Mr. Darcy having such a bad a character! The Mr. Darcy I know would never lie to Elizabeth for 2 years just because he wanted her to marry him. He would not have her based on a lie! For me it is just too disappointing! As it was reading she never really forgave him. This is not the happy ending I’m expecting in a JAFF book.
One last thing as to why I did not enjoy the book. Even though English is not my native language I could find several mistakes that distracted me from the story. For me this is usually not very relevant, but I imagine that it can be quite disturbing for those whose native language is English. The book may have been re-edited by now, so this might not be an issue anymore, but it was when I read it.
In my opinion the story is interesting, and the author created a good premise, but the development of the idea was not the best and I cannot say I liked the book.
The Storm is available at:
Amazon.com – The Storm
Amazon.co.uk – The Storm
Amazon.fr – The Storm (English Edition)